Jordan, Louis(1908–75) musician; born in Brinley, Ark. A saxophonist, singer, and show business natural, he was the most popular "race" recording artist throughout the 1940s. He began his career in the mid-1920s with local Arkansas bands and toured with the Rabbit Foot Minstrels before emerging in New York as a sideman with Chick Webb's Orchestra in 1936–38. He formed his own innovative combo, the Tympany Five, in 1938 and recorded a string of hit records in his irrepressible jump blues style. Other musicians frequently recorded his songs such as "Choo Choo Ch'Boogie," "Caldonia," and "Ain't Nobody Here But Us Chickens," thus earning him the nickname "King of the Jukeboxes." He remained active in the 1960s and 1970s, touring the U.S.A. and Europe, but recording only sporadically. He is widely cited as a seminal influence among blues and rock artists.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.